Physical lectures, Bouwpub, stale machine coffee and small talk in the bike shed made room for browser issues, quarantines, muted educators and Zoom showers. Concentration problems, motivation loss and lack of interaction are at the order of the day. In case you haven’t managed to lose your study motivation over the past near-year just yet and would like to join the lament, or when you find yourself being demotivated and are in need of some proper reverse-psychology* to get remotivated: this article might be exactly what you need.
1. Start doubting your academic ability. Let’s be honest: you didn’t end up getting accepted into this masters’ program because you’ve spent years and years of studying, examining the world around us, developing yourself, understanding the principles of research in an IE related field and mastering the art of earning ECTs. It was all a mere combination of paying thousands of Euros on tuition fees and stumbling upon an enormous amount of questionable luck that got you here. Assigning your current academic position to your intelligence or past efforts is sheer nonsense. In case you feel capable, make sure to avoid talking with novices/laymen about the courses you take, and looking back at previously taken hurdles or conquered challenges. Start the day by looking in the mirror while telling yourself that you’re dumb and end the day with a disparagement to boost your self-doubt.
2. Drop the towel. Aside from doubting your academic ability, be skeptical of your capacity to exert efforts at all. Studies show that students’ beliefs about their academic ability and capacity for effort are inherently linked to academic withdrawal (Legault et al., 2006). Past exams, papers, presentations and especially your bachelors’ dissertation all passed themselves and didn’t require any planning, efforts or coping strategies from your side. The last thing you’ve done during your pre-IE epoch is build muscles to make putting your shoulder to the wheel ever be fruitful. It’s hard to even throw in the towel when you don’t have any muscles, so just drop it. Scrap any new-course resolutions you might have and show the world your finest study flight behavior. If you’re not ready to scrap your resolutions just yet, start setting the bar way too high to make sure to disappoint yourself. Motivation is influenced by the perceived marginal value of progress (Heath et al., 1999), so stop celebrating small successes and complimenting yourself on taking any kind of effort because they have a strong potential of relighting your fire.
3. Grow antipathy towards the program. Do what you dislike, and dislike what you do. When tasks are perceived as uninteresting, uninspiring, monotonous or dull, they can severely temper students’ enthusiasm (Legault et al., 2006). Assume your teachers choose the most tedious types of assessment just to bully you, and pick the most boring topics for your assignments. Avoid interest triggers and choose electives that sound either utterly boring or extremely complicated for people with your bachelors’ background. Devalue course objectives and depreciate any of the insights you’ll gain. Burn your motivation letter, and never talk about the relevance of our field and what you hoped to achieve by registering for this degree. Reflecting on your choice of masters’ is ok, as it might make you realize that it’s probably best to drop out. By all means avoid sparking your interest or making course elements ‘fun’, and kindly request instructors to stop using Kahoot.
4. Avoid social interaction or seek discouragement. If you have roommates, try finding a place for yourself or lock your door and pretend you’re never home. Strengthen your isolation by being a jerk to others. In case you’re already on bad terms with your roommates it’s alright to roam around them so that you can occasionally pickup some negative vibes. When finding yourself in a social situation, stick to chitchat and abstain from sharing how you feel. Disable your webcam and microphone when attending lectures or group discussions. If you’re in a Shift committee, step out to upgrade your feelings of disengagement.
Although the presence of motivation isn’t necessarily related to academic achievement, it does lower distress while studying (Baker, 2004). Definitely something worthwhile pursuing in these home-bound times. Reverse-psychology doesn’t always do the trick but hopefully at least I managed to make you either smile or cringe. If not, I hope you know that we’re all in this together (a.k.a. you’re not alone) and that (re-)connecting with fellow Shifties is bliss.
By Esther Bliek
*= Is reverse-psychology not really your cup of tea and was this article of no use to you? Here are 5 ways to make yourself study when you have zero motivation.
Baker, S. R. (2004). Intrinsic, extrinsic, and amotivational orientations: Their role in university adjustment, stress, well-being, and subsequent academic performance. Current Psychology, 23(3), 189-202.
Heath, C., Larrick, R. P., & Wu, G. (1999). Goals as reference points. Cognitive psychology, 38(1), 79-109.
Legault, L., Green-Demers, I., & Pelletier, L. (2006). Why do high school students lack motivation in the classroom? Toward an understanding of academic amotivation and the role of social support. Journal of educational psychology, 98(3), 567.
It’s big, edible and omnipresent; the food industry is everywhere. And so are its problems. The food system is notorious for its major issues such as resource over-extraction, eutrophication, underpayment and power abuse. With his recently founded organization Gros, Industrial Ecology student Simon Schilt seeks to find an answer to these worrisome developments. Lowik PietersRead More
As the days get shorter and the weather gets colder, it becomes harder to do some Corona Proof activities outside. Therefore, we came up with some interesting indoor activities to get you through the coming winter. So put on your oversized sweater, get a steaming mug of tea and sit near the fireplace (read radiator) for some fresh ideas that do not include more Netflix time.
If you want to reduce your screen time, it is always an idea to get your creative side in the open. Ofcourse, you can draw or write things, but have you ever considered knitting a scarf or crocheting a stuffed animal (also works great as a Christmas present!).
You can start with knitting and crocheting quite easy: all you need is wool (around 1 euro a piece at Wibra/Action), a crochet hook (not even an euro) and knitting needles (you can all buy them at the Action/Wibra).
Next, you will need some starting patterns. Since I can recommend you to start in your own language (translating different types of stitches can be quite confusing), you might have to Google some yourself. But it is a rewarding task: you can have hours of fun for a few euros, it’s relaxing after a day of hard work and: you can make something nice out of it!
If you don’t know what you should make: you can also try to crochet or knit with waste plastics. This is how I made this bag. You first make plarn (plastic yarn), and then knit/crochet your pattern.
Talking about Christmas, since we are kind of skipping a lot of important parties, bring Christmas inside your house! We did some research for you, and watched a lot of Hallmark movies to get inspired. You can create a lot of your own ornaments.
Create an ornament from old christmas cards, or make a garland from waste paper. You can also make garlands from popcorn! A lot of creative ideas can be found on Pinterest.
Next to decorating, the Christmas spirit is important. Spread some joy by creating the most amazing (Christmas) cards or letters. Send a heartfelt letter to your grandma which you couldn’t visit, your fellow students or to a random person who could use some love. Spread some joy with your words!
Food and drinks
Not in a creative mood? Or you prefer creating food and drinks? Amaze yourself, and learn some new ways of cooking. Try to create vegetarian or vegan food, or create something from scratch from an entire different cuisine than you’re used to. Make your tastebuds familiar with new flavors by creating our new recipe we shared in the newsletter.
You can make your own Gluhwein with a bottle of red wine, an orange, 2 pieces of cinamon, 4 kruidnagels, 2 steranijs, 3 spoons of honey and 100 ml of cognac/brandy. In which you put everything together in a pan, and let it simmer for 15 minutes (Don’t let it cook!), get the rest out of the pan and serve your drink 😊.
Another idea for a rainy afternoon is to fill your day by baking some nice Christmas cookies or cupcakes! Believe me, you can fill a whole evening with decorating them (and eating them).
With all these kinds of nice foods and drinks you can also surprise your roommates with an evening of winter wonderland (or other theme night) with homemade Gluhwein and cookies, in which you can create your own Lichtjesavond!
Now you might have some spare time, you can invest it in going zero waste! As we have a lot of single use products, you can reuse this by using sustainable products. You might even want to create a bag which you can bring when the festival season starts again.
As you may notice, now we are home all day: we use a lot of single use plastics, even when we’re at home. Therefore you can make a lot of reusable products: did you know you can get a lot of fresh food in a reusable bag? Think of all the reduced plastics by buying at the local market, or at the baker.
Or go through your bathroom cabinet: did you know you can make a lot of household products yourself?
One of my favorite hobbies I picked up during the lockdown again is reading. When I was little I used to have a book with me all the time, and I have read my way through my local library. I rediscovered that it’s still the best way to escape our reality for a while. And, it doesn’t have to be expensive! Go to your local secondhand store, like Rataplan, where you can buy them for an euro per piece.
Another thing is the bookshare libraries, which you can see in the streets. In Delft there are a lot of these, where you can borrow a book, or leave a book.
Or, exchange books with your friends. You can even start your own book club.
Also, did you know the University of Leiden also has some reading books? Just search their library page for a specific book. No inspiration for a book? Check out Goodreads.
More ideas? Let us know! Send us a message and maybe your idea will be in the next newsletter!
When sitting at home in these windy, rainy autumn days you might be in need of some serious comfort food. With this easy recipe you can make a delicious vegan curry with the vegetable of the season: the pumpkin. Not only nice to carve out or put in your pumpkin spiced oatmeal latte, but also just for eating. I like to peel the skin off, but you can also leave it on for some more bite. Serve with naan, rice, (vegan) yoghurt, freshly chopped cilantro and lime slices!
2 tbsp. mustard seeds
2 tbsp. dried chili flakes
2 medium sized onions (chopped)
1 inch of fresh ginger (grated)
2 gloves of garlic (grated)
4 tbsp. curry powder
1 tbsp. cumin powder
2 tsp. Sereh (lemon grass powder)
1 tsp. dried mint
1 tsp. of salt
1 kg of pumpkin (peeled, in pieces)
1 lime (half for juice, the other for garnishing)
50 ml vegetable stock
400 ml coconut milk
Heat the oil and add the mustard seeds and chili flakes. Once the mustard seeds begin to pop, stir in the chopped onion. Fry the onion over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic and fry briefly.
Stir the curry powder, sereh powder, and cumin into the onions and fry for 30 seconds. Then add the pumpkin.
Pour in the chopped tomatoes and coconut milk and stir well before adding the stock. Season with a teaspoon of salt and the dried mint. Bring to the boil and cook the pumpkin without a lid for about 25 minutes (until you like it the texture of the pumpkin).
Season the curry with the lime juice and garnish with the finely chopped cilantro.
So what kind of job perspective will you have after finishing what you start? Starting with the sustainable career webinar 25/27 November we will give you an an idea about the several career options you have after graduating from IE.
During this free(!) three days event you can meet with a lot of interesting companies. On top of that, you can even participate in a lottery!
On Wednesday, November 25th you can meet:
Rijkswaterstaat is part of our government and is ‘working to make the Netherlands safe, secure, attractive and accessible for all’. They do this by focusing on subjects like water, environment and mobility. In this webinar they will focus on their challenges as one of the leading material consumers in making Dutch infrastructure more sustainable .
Although they require their employees to speak Dutch, the webinar will be in English.
Horticulture HortiHeroes, Greenport West-Holland & World Horti Center 16h10
One of the biggest challenges we currently face as society is the question whether we are able to provide sufficient, healthy food for everyone in the near future. Solutions need to consider the increasing pressure on land-use, the environment and biodiversity by human activities. Therefore, only sustainable innovations, in which people work together with their environment, instead of against are possible. How exactly these innovations will look like, is a challenge which the Dutch horticulture sector has accepted. It develops the most advanced greenhouses and greenhouse technology, in which crops , plants and flowers can grow by using minimum amounts of water, fossil energy, chemical fertilizers and pesticide.
–> in the signup this presentation is referred to as Innovatie Ondernemen in Transitie.
SBM Offshore 17h20
SBM Offshore believes the oceans will provide the world with safe, sustainable and affordable energy for generations to come. The energy transition is a key element. In this webinar SBM Offshore will focus on the trade-offs between safe, sustainable & affordable
On Thursday, November 26th you can meet:
LBP Sight 15h
This consultancy knows everything about sustainable solutions with regard to the built environment, spaces and environment. You can use their knowledge during the production, realization and use phase of circular building projects. In this webinar they will focus on the true value of LCA and its contribution to a sustainable society. Especially interesting for the people who are currently following the advanced LCA course
This corporation is all about recycling of electrical appliances, plastics and non-ferro metals. They focus on circular economy, social returns and compliancy, by closing loops, team work and globalizing the market. In this webinar their focus will be on the challenges of plastic recycling. An very relevant topic at the moment regarding the low oil price, making it harder for them to compete with virgin plastics.
AT Osborne 17h20
The consultancy of AT Osborne focuses on a lot different aspects: from Infrastructure to mobility and from water to legal services. They strive to make the world a better place by practical solutions and connecting. In this webinar they will host a role play in which several stakeholders have to find multiple benefits in transforming a neighbourhood with regards to sustainability.
And on Friday, November 27th you can meet with:
CE Delft 15h
The research and consultancy of CE Delft focuses on helping to build the sustainable world we all strive to live in. Their focus is on energy, transport and resource issues. They help government agencies, NGO’s and industries to create structural change.
KPN is major Dutch telecommunications and IT corporation that provides fixed and mobile connections essential for our daily life. Recognized as one of the most sustainable telecom companies in the world, KPN is striving to make their business sustainable at an optimal level via climate neutrality and circular operation. In the webinar, you will be able to learn their efforts in reducing three scopes of emissions and achieving material circularity, and hear practical tips from three MSc students working at KPN’s Energy & Circular Economy Team.
Brighten up your world and everyone’s around you!